Do People Ever Change Their Minds?

Photo courtesy of morguefile.com
Laguna Woods, California
May 27, 2017 6:57pm CST
As most of you know, I strongly disagree with many aspects of the the Trump administration ... most notably because of the damage I believe he is doing to the lives of common Americans by wanting to strip millions of people of services such as food stamps and healthcare. I have a friend, whose company I enjoy, who is an enthusiastic supporter of Trump. Yes, I am able to stay friends with people, even if they support Trump. This morning I "reacted" with "wow" to a post on Facebook which was a translation of an article from a German newspaper. The article sharply criticized Trump for his infantile, rude, and dangerous behavior. My friend defended Trump, of course, and commented the Germans have no room to criticize Trump because of their history of supporting Hitler and the Nazis. (That was an interesting comparison she made, I thought.) I responded by saying, "Oh, I don't expect any Americans to change their minds, pro or con, about Trump. In my experience, it is rare for anyone to change their minds about anything. I just think it is interesting to read what Europeans think of us." She has not responded. What is your experience? Do you think it is common or rare for people to change their minds about things ... especially important things, such as political beliefs, religious beliefs, and prejudices?
13 people like this
13 responses
@Corbin5 (79117)
• United States
28 May
It is very rare for people to change their minds. And, the more negative discourse regarding something a person is supporting, the more likely his or her mind will not change due to the innate need to defend what they believe is right.
4 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
28 May
@Corbin5 - I agree. I find it is much more effective to NOT attack their beliefs and to make it clear I do NOT expect them to change their minds. That way, either we can stay friends regardless of what they believe or, at least, we won't argue about it. I have found that most people are very set in their way regarding their beliefs.
2 people like this
@crossbones27 (14888)
• Redlands, California
28 May
It is pretty true, most people will not change their viewpoints. No matter what Trump does or his administration because they feel he is standing for what they believe in. The only thing I am baffled at is how I heard through the Bush admin through even when McCain and Romney was running was morals this and ethics that and how the Democrats have none of those. Did not ever hear one thing about morals or ethics when Trump ran and still do not. That is because they are not showing any and the Republican party as a whole is not showing any. If I was a conservative or someone that leans right, I would see they are not standing for what I believe in.
3 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
29 May
@crossbones27 - I agree that they don't even pretend their behavior is moral or ethical. Their behavior is so un-Christian that feel personally offended when they pretend there is a Christian basis for their behavior. Cutting food stamps to the low income, removing health insurance from 23,000,000 people, raising healthcare premiums to ridiculous rates for those between the ages of 50 and 64, kicking out and turning away foreigners in defiance of Christ's parable about the Good Samaritan ... none of these behaviors are remotely Christian. I am horrified by what they are doing.
2 people like this
• Redlands, California
29 May
@DeborahDiane I know and you just spoke of their policies which is the right way to go because that will have the most effect. The other corruption leading to collusion with Russian if that is indeed the case,, the many conflicts of interests that is plain as day to see, the extra security and high maintenance lifestyle of the Trumps, how he is trying to profit off or being President is also costing us dearly as tax payers. We are getting screwed probably 5 to 1 compared to your average politician.
2 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
29 May
@crossbones27 - I agree. I just told my husband that I have never heard of a president who had to hire private attorneys to protect him only 120 days into his presidency! Even if this is as bad as it gets (and I expect things to get worse), his presidency will go down in history as one of the worst disasters. How much lower can they go?
2 people like this
• Lakewood, Colorado
28 May
Yes I think that 'thinking' people can change their mind, but those that are stubborn and stuck in their ways may not admit they have changed their mind even if they do. Huh? lol
3 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
28 May
@TiarasOceanView - Ahhh! That is a very good point. Some people may secretly change their mind, but not be willing to admit it because they feel like a failure if they do. I agree that we humans can be very stubborn.
3 people like this
• Lakewood, Colorado
28 May
@DeborahDiane Yes because they do either do not want to admit they were wrong or just defending a bad idea in the first place. Thanks for understanding.
2 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
28 May
@TiarasOceanView - I understand how difficult it is for some people to change their minds. I think our beliefs are so much a part of us that it feels to some people as if they are having an arm or leg cut off if they change their mind. That sounds extreme, but we are very attached to our thoughts and feelings.
2 people like this
@Gabugs (1789)
• United States
28 May
I can well understand your friend's reaction. Some people like to follow blindly no matter what! Not I @DeborahDiane I LIKE TO GIVE THE PERSON A CHANCE and am open to change my opinion. But when a person like him repeatedly bungles up and is arrogant, I will not stand for it- - - no matter who he/she is.
2 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
29 May
@Gabugs - I have really tried to give Trump a chance since the election. However, he is going against so many of my values ... wanting to eliminate food stamps for millions of people, wanting to take away medical insurance for millions of people, wanting to open our national parks to private businesses to exploit, I just can't stand it.
1 person likes this
@Gabugs (1789)
• United States
29 May
@DeborahDiane Of course! I understand your stance completely. Wish all the negatives would simply go away. It looks like it won't because he has staunch followers who are simply blind to all his idiocies.
2 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
29 May
@Gabugs - I agree. It would be nice if he would just stop Tweeting all the time and keep a lower profile. Maybe his lawyers will lock him in the White House for a couple of years. LOL
2 people like this
@PatZAnthony (11728)
• Charlotte, North Carolina
29 May
We have spoken to a few who are really disappointed, but they don't say much more @DeborahDiane
2 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
29 May
@PatZAnthony - I am glad to hear that anyone who voted for him is now disappointed. Most of my friends still defend him.
2 people like this
@PatZAnthony (11728)
• Charlotte, North Carolina
29 May
@DeborahDiane They can only defend certain things for so long. As the truth comes out, more will have to know they might have made an error.
2 people like this
@TRBRocks420 (60983)
• Banks, Oregon
28 May
People can change their minds, but is rare. I have on some things over the years.
2 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
29 May
@TRBRocks420 - I have changed my mind about some thing, but most of the major issues I support and values I hold have remained the same for decades. I suspect that is true for a lot of people.
2 people like this
@TRBRocks420 (60983)
• Banks, Oregon
29 May
@DeborahDiane Same here. I will not change unless I truly find a better way or understanding of something.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
29 May
@TRBRocks420 - I think that is pretty normal.
1 person likes this
28 May
I think people who are willing to see things from all sides can change their minds. I know many former Trump supporters who changed their minds about him, and I know several formerly religious people who have changed their minds about certain aspects too. Some will never change their way of thinking, just like I know someone who despite all the evidence to the contrary still thinks Trump is going to do great things, and will not even consider he might be wrong. It's all up to the person.
2 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
29 May
@LittleBard - You just gave me a lot of encouragement. Thank you for that. The Trump supporters I know seem entrenched in their thinking, so I thought this must be true about most of them.
1 person likes this
• United States
31 May
I think people, especially since this recent presidential election, have formed very strong opinions about whom they like and don't like. I don't think many people will change their minds, especially with the news media as it is these days.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
31 May
@LindaCPearson - I am treating all my friends as if there is nothing I can say or do to change their minds, so I don't try. It makes for easier relationships.
1 person likes this
• United States
31 May
@DeborahDiane I think it's best to avoid political discussions with those you disagree with. It's not worth losing frirends and family over it.
2 people like this
• Laguna Woods, California
1 Jun
@LindaCPearson - I agree. Besides, sometimes I learn interesting things when I just listen.
1 person likes this
• China
28 May
I think anybody who can uphold the truth and correct mistakes may change their minds, if they once find out that things are not what they have thought of.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
29 May
@changjiangzhibin89 - I certainly hope that some people can change their minds when they realize that our president is not the moral, ethical person they may have expected. They have been deceived.
2 people like this
@anniepa (26638)
• United States
31 May
@DeborahDiane What I don't get is HOW could anyone have ever thought he was moral or ethical in any way. I mean, he showed us what he was from the beginning and most of us already knew long before he entered the Presidential race.
1 person likes this
@Courtlynn (47652)
• United States
28 May
I think some change their minds. But certainly not enough people.
1 person likes this
@Courtlynn (47652)
• United States
28 May
@DeborahDiane not necessarily. But for some yes
1 person likes this
@anniepa (26638)
• United States
8 Jun
We can only HOPE that people sometimes change their minds! The way things are going since that disastrous election I don't think some of Trump's most loyal supporters would ever admit it if they DID change their mind, they'll just stubbornly continue to defend him and claim he's going to "make America great again". I find it so frustrating when I try to have a discussion, including on this site, with people who seem to worship the ground Agent Orange walks on. I think he was right about one thing - he really could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and not lose any of his supporters! What I think scares me the most about the world of Trump is that it seems like racism, misogyny, homophobia, Islamophobia and xenophobia is far more prevalent in this country than I'd ever imagined. Now all these haters who had been silent for so many years now feel they have a license to spew their hatred and commit their violent acts. I live in a state and an area within that state that has turned "red" so every one I see I find myself wondering if they're one of the majority of people here who thinks it would be fine if I or my daughter or granddaughter were sexually assaulted by some man who felt entitled to do so.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
8 Jun
@anniepa - I understand exactly how you feel. Since this election, I feel differently about some of the people I know. I thought certain people were reasonable and moderate; now I have discovered they are prejudiced and angry. It really has changed my opinion and I am sometimes shocked by what I am seeing around the nation. It is horrifying.
@rebelann (31204)
• El Paso, Texas
28 May
Mind changes happen all the time, I wanted a cadillac back when I was car hunting but changed my mind when I saw the price tag
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
29 May
@rebelann - Ha Ha! Yes, the price of some cars has changed my mind about their value, too!
1 person likes this
@GardenGerty (90290)
• Marion, Kansas
28 May
I think that aslong as their emotions are invested in their beliefs they are not likely to change.
1 person likes this
• Laguna Woods, California
28 May
@GardenGerty - You make a good point. As long as people are emotional about their beliefs, they are virtually incapable of changing them. I think for some people it almost feels as if they are cutting off a limb in order to change their mind about something. I just assume that most people are not going to change their mind, so I do not try.
1 person likes this